I got up around 04:00AM on December 21, 2008, to hike Thunder Mountain in the dark. I hiked up in the freezing cold, through 4 feet of snow, uphill both ways, fighting off the mountain lions the whole time. Seriously, the temperatures were around the upper 20s when I started. I got up to the top about 30 minutes before sunrise. When the golden rays of sunrise reflected off of the Peaks, it was all worth it. In the foreground are a couple of buttes in Sedona.
I went back a week later with my 8x10 camera and exposed several sheets of film. Unfortunately, the wind blew the camera ever so gently, and all of my photos had a slight blur to them. And carrying about 30 pounds of camera gear up a mountain just to get blurry photos sucks! This winter I may try my 5x7 camera...
I tried several times in January and April 2008 to photograph the sunrise on the snow covered San Francisco Peaks. Unfortunately, in my haste I forgot about simple things like mirror lock-up to prevent blurry images and bringing the correct focal length (I needed a 200-250mm lens ideally; the first time I did not bring any telephoto lenses, and the 2nd time I only brought a 300mm lens). So January and April turned out to be an educational experience :-)
I took this photo with my MAMIYA M645 AFD-II medium format camera and PhaseOne medium format digital back with a 75-150mm telephoto lens.
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